Introverts like mountains better than flat land, science says

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If you’re an introvert and you live in a flat area like I do (I live in the Midwest region of the U. S.), maybe you should take your next vacation in the mountains.

According to research published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, introverts prefer mountainous regions over flat land.

In a series of three studies, researchers looked for a link between personality and a preference for certain geographical features. Using the Big Five personality test, researchers found that only one personality trait was related to terrain preference — extroversion.

Why do introverts like mountains better? More research still needs to be done, but the reason, perhaps, has to do with wooded/mountainous areas making us feel calm and secluded.

Participants in the studies perceived flat or open areas to be more sociable, exciting, and stimulating, while mountainous areas were perceived to be calmer, quieter, and more peaceful.

In addition, the research revealed that introverts tend to live in mountainous regions, while extroverts tend to live in open, flat areas.

The researchers say, though, that there’s no evidence that living in the mountains makes a person introverted. It’s more likely that introverts choose to live near mountains for the feeling of calm seclusion they offer.

So what does this mean for us introverts? Keep your temperament in mind when deciding where to live, says lead researcher Shige Oishi, according to RedOrbit.com.

“Some cities and towns have geography that is more accommodating for some people than for others…if you know you’re introverted, then you may be rejuvenated by being in a secluded place, while an extrovert may be rejuvenated more in an open space,” says Oishi.

This is the first study linking introversion and extroversion to a preference for mountains vs. flat land.

Image credit: Flickr

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Read this: 21 Undeniable Signs That You’re an Introvert


Jenn Granneman is the founder of IntrovertDear.com and the author of The Secret Lives of Introverts: Inside Our Hidden World. She also cohosts The Introvert, Dear Podcast and blogs for Psychology Today. For most of her life, Jenn felt weird, different, and out of place because of her quiet ways. She writes about introversion because she doesn’t want other introverts to feel the way she did.